West Virginia Gambling

FAQ / Q&A -- History -- Regulation -- Land Based Casinos -- Fun Facts


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West Virginia Online Casinos


Regulation and legality of West Virginia online gambling

The Mountain State is not even considering either banning or allowing gambling over the internet. Off-track betting is the only format legalized by law in West Virginia. Online casino sites, as well as online poker rooms and sportsbooks, are unlicensed. Some daily fantasy sports sites operate in the state and claim to be legal. There is a bill pending to define daily fantasy sports as not gambling.

Until any changes happen, players from West Virginia will continue to pursue offshore gambling sites open to gamers from the States with a solid reputation. For a state with strict supervision of betting within its borders, West Virginia doesn’t seem to care too much about internet gambling for the time being. There were never any cases of legal action taken against online gamblers in ‘the Switzerland of the United States’.


Gambling history in West Virginia

Ever since the early days, any gambling activities have been kept quiet in the Mountain State. West Virginia statehood was notably without much legal gambling throughout its first century. Horse and greyhound racing was legalized in the 1930s, and that’s all the locals could gamble on until in 1984 the state lottery was approved and established. The introduction of legal lottery betting was followed by a legislation that allowed racetracks to install slot machines. At first, only slots and video poker machines were approved at the state’s existing tracks. Table games and live poker were added in 2007.

During the 1990s, the video poker gaming was of questionable legality. West Virginia legalized video poker games in 2001 under the Limited Video Lottery Act and brought the underground video poker industry onto the surface. New machines were licensed, while the old ones were shipped out, and their number was capped at 9,000. West Virginia experienced a boom of the racinos after casino table games were added to racetracks and they are still the main pillars of the local land-based gaming market. Gambling options in West Virginia are rounded out by lottery and charitable bingo betting and raffles.

The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 prohibits sports betting in the state. Overall, West Virginia is more liberal than many other states when it comes to gaming. Some call it an odd mix of the progressive and the old-fashioned.

Online gambling is legal in West Virginia. As surprising as this sounds, they’re one of the only four states in the country to offer legal and regulated casino games to players.

Only Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia have managed to pass legislation that led to having a well-oiled and well-monitored online gambling market.

Everything changed in March of 2019, when legislators greenlighted the WV Lottery Interactive Wagering Act. This bill marked the legalization of all forms of online gambling, including poker.

For those of you that know the South well, you know how amazing it is to see a state in this part of the country have such a progressive outlook towards gambling as a whole.

According to the bill, every land-based casino in WV (there are 7 of them) has a right to apply for a license and serve and the only licensee for their casino site.

This framework allows for maximum transparency, whilst also preventing individual land-based casinos from creating multiple brands that operate under their name. Such a situation can very well result in a monopoly, where one operator creates an illusion of diversity.

The same approach is used for sports betting, which was legalized in August of 2018. Experts from all across the country have lauded WV for its fast and efficient implementation of this regulatory framework.

In July 2020, West Virginia got its first official only casinos - DraftKings. The famous brand saw $37.2 million wagered by players, in just the first four weeks. Later on, BetMGM joined the party.

Functioning as both a sportsbook and an online casino, the BetMGM app is so far the only competitor to DraftKings. While some are afraid this will result in a ‘stale’ market, others believe more licensees will join in the near future. FanDuel is also predicted to arrive before the spring of 2021.

While you can still legally play at offshore sites, we believe there is no need for this. The authorities cannot come after you, but you’re also willingly refusing mediation from the West Virginia Lottery Commission (WVLC) in case of a dispute.

BetMGM and DraftKings are more than enough for anyone’s gambling needs. In case you’re looking for more brands, you won’t have to wait for long. More outside brands and brick and mortar casinos are waiting for their green light from the WVLC.



Land based casinos

Residents of West Virginia can enjoy four racinos, pari-mutuel dog or horse racing facilities with video lottery, video poker and state-owned table games. The only exception from this patter is The Greenbrier, a luxury resort with a Casino Club open for the hotel's guests. There are venues in every developed part of the state which can be defined as video lottery casinos. They offer video lottery games, which can look like a slot machine, but the words ‘casino’ and ‘gambling’ may not be mentioned in their titles and descriptions of their operations.

The Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races offers more than 3,000 slot games and gaming tables. Charles Town Races is one of the busiest thoroughbred tracks in the country. Mardi Gras Casino and Resort is located in Nitro, and it was known as Tri-State Racetrack and Gaming Center before the addition of table games. Now, it features games like blackjack, roulette, craps, Mississippi Stud, Big 6, Three Card Poker and Chase the Flush, alongside slots and live/off-track greyhound racing.

The Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort was the first racetrack in the United States to get slot machines and become a racino. The facility now hosts around 3,200 slots and 50 table games, including blackjack, roulette and Three Card Poker. Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack (formerly known as Wheeling Downs) has a tropical theme and houses slots, off-track and live greyhound and horse racing, and a full complement of table games.

The Greenbrier is a unique venue, a historic resort. It is situated in the Allegheny Mountains near White Sulphur Springs. It was built in 1913 and the casino club opened in 2010. Only guests of the hotel may frequent the casino, which stretches across 103,000 square feet and includes 320 different slot machines, horse & dog simulcast racing, 37 tables with blackjack, roulette, baccarat and craps, and a sportsbook.

West Virginia has no federally or state recognized tribes, therefore it has no Native American casinos.

Neighbouring States: Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia



At which age can you legally play at West Virginia online casinos?

21. Brick and mortar casinos, sportsbooks, and online casinos all have the same limit. 18+ age limits exist for lottery tickets, VLTs, bingo, raffles, and pari-mutuel wagers on dog & horse races. Be careful about navigating these various forms of gambling.

What games are available?

Currently, you can find games from NetEnt, Spin Games, Scientific Games, Konami, IGT, and several other software providers.

Do WV casino sites also offer live casino titles?

Unfortunately, neither DraftKings nor BetMGM have a live dealer section yet. It is believed that casino sites will open up their live casino sections in the future.

How can you deposit money into your account at West Virginia online casinos?

West Virginia online casinos operate under the same financial standards as do sites in other legal states, as well as those in ‘grey area’ states.

Debit/credit cards are still the most frequently used deposit methods. It’s easy to connect your card to a casino account - all you have to do is input a few numbers and you can start playing. However, card theft is at an all-time high.

eWallets, however, have managed to provide solutions to these security issues. Not only do you can hide your personal information from casino sites, but you can also shop online with just a few clicks.

Cryptocurrencies have stepped this up a notch, with the help of blockchain technology. All transactions are anonymous and impossible to be manipulated with.

You can also use eChecks and wire transfers, but they’re incredibly slow and outdated. WV players utilize them rarely.

Can you get your withdrawal right away once you request it?

Technically, yes. However, waiting times vary depending on the exact payment method that’s being used. Here are the approximate waiting times for the most popular platforms:

• Cryptocurrencies: up to one hour

• Credit/debit cards: 3-5 business days

• Wire transfers: 5-7 days

• eCheck: 4-6 days

• eWallets: instant

Fun Facts about West Virginia

  • West Virginia has a notable contribution to agriculture. It is home to the Golden Delicious apple, the official state fruit. This variety of yellow apples is native to West Virginia. There are records of the first golden apple tree originating in Clay County in 1775. West Virginia is also home of the Grimes Golden apple.
  • Outdoor advertising is invented in West Virginia. It became popular in the 1920s. The first company to hire traveling contractors to promote their products was the Block Brothers Tobacco Company. It began placing written advertisements on the sides of barns, and so ‘barnstorming’ advertising was born..
  • West Virginia is where you can find a visitor’s center made entirely out of coal. The Tug Valley Chamber of Commerce is located in the Coal House, built in 1933 out of 65 tons of bituminous coal. Curious guests can stop by the gift shop and learn about the area’s rich coal mining history.


[1] West Virginia Lottery

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